National Survey of Nonprofits Shows the Power of Taglines
September 26, 2008 For nonprofits, a name may not be enough. They also need a tagline, a phrase of eight words or less that tells their story, according to a recently released report based on a national survey of 1,900 nonprofits.
The Nonprofit Tagline Report, developed by the Getting Attention blog, notes that, Many organizations expect their names to broadcast what it is they do. Trouble is, they frequently dont.
The report provides models, dos and donts, trends on tagline use and longevity, and the first-ever directory of more than 1,000 nonprofit taglines. The survey forming the basis of the report reflected a wide range of organizations that are diverse in field or issue focus, budget and staff size, longevity, and geographic location; from the Pulmonary Hypertension Association to the Bendigo (Australia) Figure Skating Club and the Oregon Center for Public Policy.
Among the report's major findings are the following:
- Taglines that work generally fall into one of four categories, describing an organizations work, impact or value, core values or spirit, or strategic approach.
- Most effective taglines relate to an organizations name, without repeating it.
- High-power taglines tell a memorable story, expresses the organizations brand, is distinctive, and motivates its audience.
- 72% of nonprofits rate their taglines poorly, or dont have one at all.
- The leading reason that nonprofits dont have taglines is they never
thought of it.
- Human services organizations lead the way in having taglines (75%), with grantmakers just behind.
- Nonprofit staff members most focused on making the most of their taglines are marketers (47%), fundraisers (24%), and executive directors (21%).
- Most taglines gauged to be very effective have been in use two to four years (43%).
The report includes a 10-point check list to help nonprofits develop an effective tagline, in order to achieve its marketing and organizational goals.
Key among them are: taglines must convey your nonprofits or programs impact or value, be broadly and easily accessible and memorable, avoiding jargon and acronyms, be specific to your organization, not easily used by another nonprofit reaching out to the same audiences, and be eight words or less.
For the full report click here